Are you ready for this?

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Location: United Kingdom

Yes...this is ALL about me, and mine. Marvellously self indulgent, feel free to tell me how splendid I am, leave comments, nice ones please, I have little kids and teenagers who can do the rude stuff. I am a grandma, to the glorious Joshua, I'm allowed to look frazzled and weary, I earned it. The older I get, the more I see that hanging on and being patient is worth it! They ( whoever 'they' are) are so right when they say you never know what is around the corner, it isn't always an articulated truck! It is vital to make the time for making memories, friends are the greatest treasure, I love mine. I am rich!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Nearly tomorrow.

Well then, here we are, the night before. Ooooooh.
That's all I can think of saying because OOOOOHHHH! In 12 hours we'll be on the train.
Elijah helped me pack, he tried on my new flat black pumps, he clopped about upstairs, sat with his legs crossed for a while and then he packed them. He got my going to the theatre ( to see Lion King) outfit from the wardrobe and he folded it ( perfectly) and packed it, he even found a tin of monkey mints and packed those ( for a fresh breathed moment perhaps)
That's all I packed so far ( and I didn't actually pack it, did I ?) I am getting so much worse at the procrastination thing ( or am I getting better at it, seeing as I do it so much more!?) I used to make lists and get ready and keep checking and thinking and checking and worrying and now? Gah.....what the heck. ( hell actually but I feel I have been swearing and being course too much lately so we'll go with heck, as lame as it sounds)
I was so excited earlier that I was a bit like the boys when they know we are going to the Zoo or somewhere exciting, now though I am a bit weepy and emotional and gushingly grateful ( and also sacred because I am me and I do scared so well) I have no idea how people leave their kids a lot, or put them on planes to stay with other people. I know WHY they do it, just not how.
It does children no harm to see their parents have interests and lives outside of being at their beck and call, it's just that H and I actually don't, do we? The boys are our be all and end all. Not all a bad thing but they grow so quickly and the very thought that H and I will wake up one morning and look at each other and stop dead in our tracks, look at each other and ask what now? That would be miserable wouldn't it?
We need this next few days more than we know we need it. We owe it to the boys to take this time and completely suck it dry of every great thing it has to offer.
I have done NO house work, no cleaning or even tidying, my reasoning for this? Dan is divine, we all know that, pretty much perfection. If I could change one thing it would be to stop the way he swears ALL the time, and he blasphemes, til my blood runs cold and my soul begs for mercy.
He is also THE messiest and untidiest person I have ever come across. He will look after these boys and their every need, but will he clean or tidy anything in 3 days? I bet he won't, if I leave this house a mess and come back to a mess, C'est la Vie, tra la la. If I clean and tidy and leave it spotless, no matter how much fun and rest I may get in the next few days, if I come back and it is a pig sty ( and it will be, these kids trash the joint in 2o minutes, we clean and tidy and it's right back to trash in moments) well then I would forget all the fun and just be so MAD!
So, plan A then, leave a mess and come back to little change! Clever me.
I have left notes stuck in various places and then tell myself that we are not leavin for outer darkness, we will not be in Siberia, we will be 4 hours up the road with telephones and email and all manner of methods of communication. I was saying to H today that good heavens, one phone call and he could be back here in a matter of 4 hours, what's the worry about? Panic over.
Whether to ake laptops or not...hmmmm. Well, we should absolutely not waste time online when we could be out and about and seeing and shopping and eating what other people have cooked and placed in front of us, we will be dressing up and, in th evening mind you, going out. However, then we will retire to our room and then H will sleep and eventually I will too but there is a strong possibility that there will b ethose hours between 11 and 3 when I could either sit and stare into darkness and listen to H's gentle snoring, or I could plug in the laptop and chat with friends and write my blog. Not much of a choice.
Of course, who knows, I might have such a busy time that I just crash and sleep like a normal person, in which case it will stay in my case, wouldn't that be great?
My head is very busy lately, the thinking and more thinking, usually that comes with a big slump but this time the thinking isn't dark, it's full.
How do I explain what that means? It's not a head full of endless and pointless thoughts, more a head full of incredible facts.
There isn't a day that passes lately without my being able to see and appreciate that life is going in a good direction, that is still a breath holding thing for me. I suppose it's like someone who has stopped smoking after years and years, suddenly they can breathe easier and taste food again for the first time in years. After so many years of being so sad, I am able at last to think and not be weary. *sigh* I like that.
Dan will be here soon, then I can make his ears bleed with the do's and don'ts, the oh ands and the ooooh nearly forgots. Then he can nod and pretend he cares and is listening and tell me to not worry and I will laugh and say Me? Worry? Of course not and go to bed and worry and then be excited but probably not sleep much.
Is it nearly tomorrow yet?


Sunday, April 27, 2008

It's a mum thing.

So, 2 sleeps, just 2 more days and H and I head off on our trip to London. Incredibly exciting, isn't it???
I am even excited about the train ride because the TRAIN?? WE go on the coach when we go anywhere because it is about 1/3 of the train fare but on tuesday we leave in the morning and a mere 2.something later we will be in London, with our cases and cameras, our expectations and our worries. WORRIES? What worries? Let me tell you.
I don't leave my little children, not ever...not without one of their parents staying with them. When the first one had the first 3 I would do what I wanted to do. Sometimes ( though not often) I leave them with H while I go out and come back. In june I will actually leave the COUNTRY ( !!) with him staying behind looking after the boys and dreaming of gadgets I may bring home with me.
I left the big ones once, for 2 weeks, with my mum while I flew to L.A to meet H. They were 10, 12 and 14 and I still felt a bit sick about leaving them ( still did it though!)
Tuesday will be the first time ever that these little boys will be without either of us.
Oh......freezer, pizzas they are easy, Dan can do that..yes will leave Pizza ( Dan is a trained and magnificent chef, he shows ME how to make things but I am fretting, what if my babies starve and are pitiful wretches when we return after gorging on splendid repasts in grand establishments?)
Argh.....will they be safe? What if....( Dan is a policeman with all the requisite training and more common sense than I will ever give him credit for yet still....what if?)
School, they must go to school and be on time and look smart and they get out at 3.40 and what if. ( Well, 2 days! Will they be doomed to idiocy and ignorance if, in the most extreme case , it all going belly up, they don't even get to school for 2 days?? Will they? No! But you know...the what ifs. )
I am telling myself that Isaac will be fine and I know he will be, whether DAN will be fine and be able to go with the rigid must do's, yes well that is a different question entirely.
Eli is poorly and snotty and last night was coughing like a barking seal. Today he has had a great nap and eaten like a horse, he is fine but precious lamb, how will he fare without his mummy for 2 nights??





What do you think? ( will he even notice I am gone?)

Seth, the one I rarely worry about is probably the most likely one to worry about us, if it weren't for the fact that it is Dan looking after them while we are living it up. From the day he was born he has been Dan's boy. Best friends always.


When Seth was about 2 weeks old, Dan asked " How on earth did we ever think we were happy before this boy was born?" Quite. How indeed.

I know that all of them will be fine, I suspect there will be naughtiness and rule breaking, eating of much forbidden in the week foods, late nights, hectic mornings. Memories made.
H and I? We can hardly begin to imagine, we had our one day on London and loved it, having to rush and see as much as we could, travel the 4 hour bus trip twice in one day.....well this won't compare will it, leisurely and pampered, not a care to what time it is, a real grown up evening at the Theatre, just him and I, short trip back to the hotel when the show is over and sleep, for as long as we like, breakfast as a couple, peaceful and quiet , leaving when we like, returning when we choose, eating where and when and what we decide and fancy.

Excited applause

I could almost puke I am so excited.


Saturday, April 26, 2008

Oh look! Today we have...

I know, what's the with the pictures? It's a phase, humour me because it's such FUN. I have time on my hands, I am seeing just how much time I spent over at babyzone and now, well I have a clean and shiny home, folded laundry and a song in my heart , also, time.
Bearing a grudge is so not me, try as I may my attention span and memory are pants so I forget. All is well.
This morning we had a chat with the little people, we explained that the behavior we have been seeing lately, the answering back, is going to stop. I am weary of my own voice, despite my blogging last night about my tantrum and bad temper and throwing in the humour. I really don't enjoy losing my temper. With the years of arguing with Sophie, with the endless fighting and the horrendous language we have been subjected too, I am frozen with the fear of having to relive anything like that with the boys, Seth is very like his sister in his ability to say exactly the wrong thing, with the wrong tone of voice at the wrong time and he has the added touch of being incredibly bright and hitting the spot every time. He is like a terrier with a rat and will argue and row and keep on and on. If we let him.
So we are not letting him. I explained that from now on, where respect for H and I are concerned, they don't get any warnings, if they are rude, disrespectful or answer back, something goes. Without a second chance. This is something that will ALWAYS be, no matter how old they are they will speak to us politely and they will listen to us, if they don't they will have something precious taken away, be it time on the computer or listening to the iPod, I am tired of shouting and bargaining, asking and expecting, from now on I will remind and then go in for the kill. It worked today with Seth, he missed the weekly trip to Torquay and when he tried again with the answering back....I simply said " remember, this is how it is, you either listen and you think or you accept the consequences, the consequence to any answering back is going to be no basketball today, I am done discussing it, think and make your choice" and he very begrudgingly did what he had been told to do...without a word, wow!
Also H had a brain wave ( lovely H, he is such a great husband, did I tell you that lately? ) when it was time to clean thier rooms before we went on the weekly trip to the £1 store and for lunch, H said " Back to front day! Seth is going to clean Isaac and Eli's room and they will do Seth's room. Let's go!"
They loved it, shutting themselves into the others rooms " NO! You can't come in! It's not DONE!"
Then there was much " HEY! look what we did in YOUR room!" and " yeah but see how clean YOUR room is!" I think we'll have them do our room next week, they did a remarkably splendid job.

At the £1 shop( where everything is a £1 and every week we go and LOOK! WOW! buy TWO! and when I am in the states and hit a $1 store..pitiful because $1 !!!! That's FIFTY FOUR! ) Anyway if they didn't have a tape thing that you can plug your iPOd into and then put in your tape player in the car and WHOOPPPEEEEEE we have iPod music, in the CAR, the dear little car that was free and costs half what the mini van cost to tax which is great because it needs taxing on thursday ( I kid you not, I just typed thursday completely backwards..what? How did I do that?? My brain is either very fast or very backward) and so Isaac and I went to buy some last minute bits for tomorrow, with windows open and we listened to Little Richard almost as loud as it would go, we had Chuck Berry and we sang 'til we were hoarse.

In fact, even with petrol at £1.07 a litre which is about $9 a gallon, we threw caution to the wind and we just drove and drove and sang and drove and we hardly wanted to come home. But we did. Then we had to go out again because we forgot something and Eli came too. Fun, that's that that was, just fun.

funAnd although I would love to claim credit for is purely accidental that Ollie and Stan are dancing in time to Little Richard!

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Friday, April 25, 2008

That's better.


It is entirely possible, when you are me, to go from lala fluffy land, where all is lovely and happy and nothing could ever be wrong, to feeling so murderously enraged that I frighten even myself and moments like that, I am an alien.
I almost see what is happening, from a distance and then ...well I carry on anyway.
Today was a grand day. Almost as grand as they come. Daniel called to say that he had deposited the money in my account to pay for the hotel and then some. (I wish I could say that I was totally and gloriously thrilled and of course I am thrilled but I am also a little bit horribly uncomfortable, why is it so hard to just say THANKYOU! and HOORAY! and then just be excited and grateful, instead of THANKYOU and HOORAY and this is so, sort of.....that my CHILD is doing this and it is SO huge in so many ways for me, for H? Who knows, I don't like him right now and if he is the same tomorrow as he was this evening, guess what? Dan and I will be having a few days in London. )
For the most part, I live with H's lack of "WHOOHOO WHAT about THAT then. YEAY!!! WHHHHHOOOT! " you know, bloody aspergers and all, is it impossible for a person with autism, even in its weakest times or types, to just bloody pretend? Is it? IS IT?
This aftrenoon I almost saw a teeny weeny bit of excitement....a half smile when he spoke about having those 2 nights and 3 days in London, that he loves...or likes a lot but ...yeah, what?
Actually that isn't even what I am so angry about that my heart is thumping so hard I am pretending I just ran a marathon and WHOOHOO, fit me!
Fridays are good, late to bed, kids can watch Britains got talent, the bigger 2 take an iPod to bed and watch basketball clips or something, ( and on a side note 2 iPODS, because 2 is better than one and one has a bit more to it than the other and actually, while I am in Boston maybe pick up another one because THIS one has even more features and you can never have too many iPods, apparantly. I have a £29 cell phone, it makes calls and receives them and it has a camera that probably can take pictures but then what? They stay on my phone because I can't send them or anything. I am bored with my phone but it's OK , when one day last week, I said in passing that hey, I kind of fancy a new phone....a look of absolute incredulity passed over H's face, how controlled of me to write H instead of what I wanted to write, anyhoo, he looked and said " New phone? NEW PHONE? Why, what doesn't your phone have that you need?" and he really and TRULY did not get the comparison when I said " probably a few things similar to whatever your 2 iPod touches don't have that another one might" ) And even THAT isn't what has made me so mad that my head is sort of grinding inside and my fists are only unballed because I am typing, although maybe I am using my feet.
No, boys went to bed at 9..this is super late but they were still allowed to use the iPods and when I went up at 9.45 Seth was so fast asleep, I gently took out one ear phone, lifted the dropped iPod and when I tried to get the 2nd ear phone he woke up, quickly and was so MAD! I understood that he was startled and began to explain that it was late..but he wasn't awake enough to hear me and he was yelling and screaming.
Oh boy, too late no way he can have that iPod back, not a chance. I gave up trying to reason with him and went to walk out of the room..... H came blasting in without having a clue what had happened, yelling the odds and left.
As he came back into the front room I began to tell him what had happened and before I had managed to say more than 4 words he said ( you ready for this? Are you sure because I am pretty sure most of my reading people are women and almost wish that I could somehow gather the collective gasp I am sure this next sentance will bring and then use it to power my electrical goods for at least 18 months)

" Shut up, you think I care what happened?"



uh oh

Yelling In Anger


v v angry

angry woman

I\'m an angry white woman



Anger Problem
( OK, so I might delete that one soon, for now it is making me laugh!)

Anger resolution

Oh. my. Can you even begin to imagine??
I think I used most swear words at least one and several two or three times, 2 doors got slammed, one of them twice and I could not leave it.
At some point, who remembers when, he said something ( did he? Was I listening, no because I have no idea WHAT he said) and I replied that I had been about to give the iPod back, the wire was twisted and in the .21 of a second it was taking to unravel it, Seth screamed and was so rude I couldn't let him have it back.

"Oh, well why didn't you explain that earlier?"

So now he is in bed, where I sent him ( or I said something like, I am going into the dining room because I cannot and will not be in the same room as someone who speaks to me the way you did and next time we wonder why Seth speaks to me the way he does, shall we look at you? Yes, I most certainly will, I'll come back in here when you have gone" added a few satisying expletives and then sat in the dining room, breathing and muttering things like " ........" I probably shouldn't say what I was muttering because whilst enormously satisfying at the time, and as called for as they were when I said them, written down they make me feel a tiny bit of shame. Anyway he does actually have a dad and we all have an anus so why I felt the need to use that word, well who know?
I don't sulk, never been able to. I try to and about 8 minutes later forget and mention something I saw earlier. Annoying. This evening though I am sulking, really well actually, am impressed with myself. He isn't here to see me seethe and sulk of course, but I'm sure he can feel it burning a hole through the bedroom floor and I should bloody well think so indeed.
I like to think he was sheepish as he went to bed but I was facing the other way, as is correct when sulking and making a point, the point being, do not ever, no NEVER, tell your wife to shut up. Especially when she has the most searing case of PMS.

PMS issues xD

And how is it, that a normally pleasant and well mannered man, with thoughtful manners and quiet disposition, can once a month, as regular as clockwork, turn into such a complete and utter arse? Can't understand it at all.


Limbering up...

A few of the girls and I have been practising, ready for Boston, it really will be a fun time!

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Thursday, April 24, 2008

And sometimes, she is so glorious I could eat her!

So, Sophie my drug free daughter, who no longer drinks, smokes or even bites her nails. Always stunning in figure, always eaten whatever she she likes ( pizza, chips, cheese strings) and always stayed so slim and slyph like, well without a cigarette in her mouth, or a glass to her lips, of high or crashed from drugs, she has a mouth and hands that are free to do so many other things, like eat. A lot. Without the crazed hyper nonsense of stimulants, the walk from one place to another is sooooooooo far, she gets a ride, or a bus or stays home.
Today, as requested, she burst into our house just at lunch time.
" Oh! Hell!" Foof, puff, wheeze " That bloody hill is going to kill me, I am OBESE...I am really a fat knacker and these damn jeans are so TIGHT!"
Flop, puff, sigh of relief and zip is undone and more belly that I have ever seen on her explodes from within those jeans. "Look at that! I mean LOOK AT THAT!" .......
"Mmmmmsomething smells nice..THAT smells nice! " ( pointing at H's lunch, a hamburger patty/ beefburger to us English folk)
"Sophie, the boys had pizza, Isaac didn't want his, it's in the Kitchen you can eat that if you like"
Minutes later she came in with a fat hamburger, with cheese, in a fluffy roll.
" Did you heat that up out of the fridge?"
"Did you eat Isaac's pizza?"
She stood with her jeans undone and her belly out, boobs that have always been full, now straining at the seams......and then she said
" But, I am NOT fat, I am just really voluptuous!"
And then she told the boys that she needed their help and took them 2 miles to a park , rode bikes, played basketball, went on hike, walked them home. Very good. Which gave her an we go again!
She is, as each day passes, more splendid than I could ever imagine.


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

On hearth and home.

2 full days of sunshine, I can't tell you what a difference it makes to me to have windows open, warmth and brightness. I preen and breathe deeply and look for things to do. I sleep better after being in the sunshine, I have more patience with the boys. I enjoy cleaning and making good. I find myself looking around and thinking of all the things I want to do in this house.
I have to admit that this house is beating me a bit, or it has beaten me until now. There is so much to do to make it so that I can feel proud of it. I feel at home here, I feel safe here and the spirit of this house is great.
The paintwork sucks! Who paints the trim and doorways grey? Who does that? What kind of person would paint the sitting room trim a salmon colour? And so much of it and so HIGH UP!
Throw in the salmon carpets with black spots and turquoise patterns and my naturally tasteful soul feel a little insulted. In my former, wintery state of mind, All I could think was " Ewwwww" and hide under the bed covers. As spring arrives I find myself getting ready to attack the grey trim with a crisp white satin paint. I would love wooden blinds instead of the curtains my sister gave me. I have almost done the toilet that was olive green and had grey and white checkered plastic backing behind the sink. I have to wait for the landlord to do something with the mould at the back of the toilet. We all know about Landlords, don't we? This landlord demanded £20 from us last week, said he had a bill from when we cleaned the carpets, £20.01 for 2 days.....we just had a bill for £112 for nearly 12 weeks.....I am without fight for now, just hand over money and try not to think about it, whilst waiting and waiting for work to be done.
I am so keen to work on the window boxes along the wall, I long to see them filled with colour and smelling of fresh air and pretty things. I imagine a summers evening while I water them and smile with complete pleasure at how glorious they look. For now we are planning our trip to London next week and then my Boston trip, paying the bills and trying to get comfy and caught up, flowers and paint must wait just a while longer. Not too much longer though.
I love home shows, do it yourself shows, design shows, fix it uppers and Extreme makeover, oh the tears as I watch that and imagine how those families feel, although the ever practical me always wonders about the enormous utilities and taxes and such like....I would love someone to turn up and do me a house that was splendid but affordable after they left!
My ideal home would have 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, front room, huge kitchen with a huge side by side fridge freezer and a walk in utility room big enough for all our clothes to be kept in it after they have been washed, no closets needed upstairs.
1/ 2 an acre of land, big enough for playing and flowers, trampoline and basketballs. Big gates to keep little people in and big people out.
I know that this house that we are in, has the potential to be glorious, I'm just not sure where to start and that has never happened before, I usually just look and know and do it. I do think that once back from London and when the weather is better for a good long while, I will begin to begin...and then there will be no stopping me! I look forward to that enormously.
Thank goodness for sunshine and the positivity it brings with it, how wonderful to see that I can really revel in the fact that we are here to stay and we can work on making it a home we really love. I think the past moving and being uprooted hit me harder than even I knew, it's taking a lot longer to let go of that fear and really enjoy what we have now.
Our lovely rest next week, the fun and relaxation we will have will enable us to come back and get on with it all. For now I am so enjoying the change in the weather and all that it brings with it. Enough for now I think.


Monday, April 21, 2008

To pee, or not to pee, that is the question.

So, Isaac, every night, between 10.30 and 1am, Isaac gets out of bed and starts running, he runs up the stairs, down the stairs, along the hallways and then, when he feels he has hit the right spot, he pees. More often than not, in a shoe.
This is the most bizarre thing and when he hear his thumping thumpety feet we run, catch him, point him at the toilet and he will stand and shake from head to foot as he pees, such a blissful release. Sending him to pee before he goes to bed make no difference, he still needs that night time run. He refuses to believe that he does this running and peeing and I have taken to telling him that one of these nights I am going to video him doing it. The majority of our family has been on the receiving end of the wet shoe phenomenon, Jordan's were a favourite because his shoes hold at least a gallon. In the morning he asks if he ran last night and when I say 'of course, you always do' he will ask " Well, did you tape it then??' As yet I haven't.
Seth has the bladder of a camel, he can go to bed at 7.30, sleep til 7.30, wake up, have breakfast, get dressed...then pee because we say he should, you know, in case he explodes on the way to school maybe.
Elijah is pretty good now, hopeless at the whole bladder control thing until he was 3 1/2, his motto being " Ne'er mind" or " oh oh, it don't matter" At night time he doesn't get a drink and we haveto stand and watch him pee, each evening he chooses a different animal to be, on a bad tempered night he will do a spider wee because he don't need one and you can't make him do one he is only doing a spider wee and that's it. On a good night he does an Elephant wee or even a POWER RANGER wee...yeah, beat that!
Still, on occasion he wets the bed, no biggie, ne'er mind, oh oh, it don't matter.
Last night he did a monster POWER RANGER HUGE wee, ahhhhhhhhhh, heaven.
Off he went to bed and when I went to bed just before 2am he was wet....I tutted and changed, him, stripped the bed and "What? How does this kid do that? He peed like a racehorse ..or POWER RANGER of the monster variety, had nothing to drink and yet, soaked, even the TOP of his quilt was wet man that takes talent!
All clean and dry I went to bed myself and had a lovely sleep til 5am. ( whoo 3 hours!)
This evening, H went up to bed and came back down laughing, he said how Isaac came out of his room for his nightly run and made straight for the toy drawers in the landing.....H had to pick him up and run to the bathroom with him. It was only then the mystery of how Eli managed to pee on TOP of his bed last night became clear to me.
Maybe Isaac should quit the bedtime drink too, what do you think?


Sunday, April 20, 2008

thou shalt go to the house of prayer...

....upon my Holy day, with cheerful hearts and countenances.


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Random waffling.

Not sure what I will write today, I have all sorts of bitty nonsense popping in and out of my head so shall we just run with that?
Things like....Daniel can swim! So can Jordan and I think Sophie but I have no idea how they learned! Actually, in a vain attempt to somehow get Sophie on some sort of planet close to earth, I did enroll her in various classes, horse riding and swimming and what not...I took er swimming ( she was 4 I think) and I sat and watched her being thrown into a really deep pool and having to swim underwater through hoops and collect things from the bottom of the pool etc, she gave it her all and I sat for maybe 3 or 4 lessons thinking " Wow, this is radical, look at what they ask these brand new swimming tadpoles to do! Looks kind of scary but she's holding her own, underwater more than I like, but she's smiling when she bobs up and gasps in some air, must be OK." Eventually, ( was slow in those days too) when she looked more waterlogged than normal and didn't seem to be so happy one week, I asked what the reasoning was behind this bizarre throwing her in and hoping for the best...seems that somehow they had signed her up as a competent swimmer and put her in a very advanced class! Bless her little bathing suit! So we stopped that. That's maybe why she can swim though, the boys? Who knew! Marvellous!
Dan did a swimathon today for cancer research, he did call to say he did it and how far he swam and how much he raised and I would definitely tell you but I was so busy thinking " Wow, Dan can swim!" that I missed the details, I am such a great mother, aren't I?
I sometimes get exhausted when I read the regime that some mothers are on due to their children's social lives and the clubs. the lessons the craziness. I have been known to feel guilt for about 20 seconds every 3 years or so ...then I look at my big kids who didn't get classes and lessons and were thrown to the wind to grasp it on the way past and well can you believe it? They are pretty darned well rounded, they can do so many things and enjoy so many different things, they are the most social and well rounded people ( Oh I know, I write about every one of Sophie's problems but meet her, I dare you! Talk to her for 30 minutes...or listen to her because given 30 minutes with her won't actually give you any time to get a word in, she is delightfully entertaining, will shame me in the first 47 seconds but you'll love having been with her, I promise, she will make you laugh and give you something to talk about for weeks. )
I admit that very often, when faced with people telling me what a joy these adult children are and hearing tales of how helpful and funny etc they are I bask in the glory for a moment until I realise that actually, it's a fluke as much as a result of anything I may have done.
I will take every credit for the boys being well adjusted, that was no accident and I will say that I am sure had things been different they would be sad and troubled adults, they aren't, that was me and the Lord ( The Lord and me) pat my back, I'll take it.
The rest though has a lot to do with genes, their dad is a funny man, mostly kind, predominantly stupid, I am loving and loyal and consistent, they have fabulous grandparents and a solid family, they had a good chance of being pretty good people all in all.
Elijah has become a stranger to me this past week. He has made me see that the Lord knows us and loves us and sends us only what we can deal with. A hyperactive child is not one of those things. Good grief, what IS all that jumping about? What's he doing it for? He has painted things that shouldn't be painted ( himself mostly, black) he has torn, broken, climbed, emptied, spilled , tripped you name it he has done it, which is really normal for him anyway but all the while, he has been jumping. Stop the bloody jumping for the sake of all that's bouncy.
In the bath, JUMP! SPLASH! Watching T.V. JUMP! JUMP! JUMP! Eating dinner JUMP! ( me... SIT DOWN ..what DO you think you are doing? My goodness I don't think we have bad manners int his house ELIJAH SIT DOWN! trying to get him dressed JUMP ( hit chin.....that hurts, very much) It is quite the most annoying thing, will he grow out of it? Did my other children do this and I somehow forgot? Selective memory? He's been like one of those dogs that were only ever invented so people would have something to hate and scorn, bouncy yippy little dogs that have no purpose but to leap and make a noise that incites rage. And yes, Elijah has been making the noises too, much yapping and growling and ...hey, I wonder if he is starting to think he may be a dog when he grows up because his desire to be a girl has been met with such disinterest lately ( from everyone but Seth, who sighs and takes the time most afternoons to explain that Eli is a boy and will always be a boy and is there anything we can do to stop this ridiculous wearing of pink and asking for things like pink and silver cheerleader's batons things?) Perhaps he will be a dog instead. He has said that he will not be a boy when he grows up, when he grows up he is definitely changing his mind on that one.
My legs hurt tonight, miserably, I shall have a little rest on the sofa and watch 'grumpy old men' that'll help for sure.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Spring, chickens.

We've nearly done it. The school holidays, 2 weeks. Is that all? The 6 week summer holidays always fly by and usually I don't mind school breaks at all because it means being more relaxed and not having to make packed lunches and what not. This break has been painful, I knew we would miss the garden and the trampoline but oh my goodness, this hurts! Seth is as happy as Larry out in the little yard with his basketball hoop and as long as he can shovel in some food every hour or so he's fine. Isaac and Eli, not quite as easy to please. Isaac loves to dress in his suit and be Chuck Berry and Eli will change clothes every 37 minutes because he can....and then they get restless and eventually H or I or both have to brave the elements and take the buggers out.
Today I took them because H woke up at 3am this morning and never got back to sleep. By 11 he was looking like pooh. so, lets go to Teignmouth, lovely sunny Teignmouth with the sea and the park, the fresh air and the open spaces for them to run, bikes and scooters crammed in the back and of course the ball, always the ball.
We got there about 3pm and dear was SO cold. SOOOOO cold, I knew that the boys wouldn't be able to stand it so didn't panic, just sat on a bench and huddled and waited, and waited......why do kids not feel the cold? I mean this was bitingly cold and the wind right off the sea I swear I thought my giblets would get sucked out and blown across the ocean. Still those boys ran and played and climbed and I I climbed into the little climbie castle and sheltered from the wind and made other parents look at me as if I was the troll under the bridge but I cared not, I was warmer, I was not going to leave my Castle.
When we got back in the car we couldn't breathe because it felt so hot, the sun was beautiful, there just wasn't a bit of heat to it. When is spring coming? When? I am so ready, even been shaving my legs and applying glorious Lancombe summer shimmer lotion, have summer glow to my fat legs and everything, my feet are all filed and lotioned and filed again and have not the split and cracked appearance of winter feet. COME ON! I want capri pants and loose flowing tops, flip flops ( I did wear crocs today and I think my feet were almost sliced through with that bitter wind) It is half way through April, this time last year I was posting pictures of the boys in the water, in the HOT SUNSHINE. Oh I am ready for some more of that.
We have been here 11 weeks, I have finished painting the walls of the bathroom! Yeay! The bathroom ( well toilet) measures maybe 5 ft by 4 ft. I only have to paint half the walls. It has been a project, never in the history of decorating has a little room taken so long. I still have to finish ( read start) the wallpaper on the bottom of the walls, don't hold your breath. I am taking this whole ' not going anywhere don't rush me' thing to the very limits. Watch me.
I am feeling a bit lively these days, give me a lie in of a morning and I am raring to go. When H takes the boys out for an hour or so I can get so much done.
I used to do all my work during the night, when everyone is asleep and I can work undisturbed I get down and get on and thrive on how much can be achieved. The last week or so that hasn't been happening and I have been slipping down into a pit of chaos...why isn't that ironing done? Hey....that kitchen floor is so dirty.....well for goodness sake. Could it be that I spend the early hours online chatting with glorious women who make me almost lose control of my famously rock solid pelvic floor muscles? Why yes,I believe that might be the reason, so this week I have found myself in the kitchen with Louis Armstrong or the Carpenters belting out a tune or 3 while I do ironing and baking, washing the floor while the sun is up ( imagine!) and even painting in the daylight hours, all so I am available to join in this nightly ribaldry. I looked up Ribaldry because I so wanted to use that word, it is indeed fitting...

RibaldryRib"ald*ry\, n. [OE. ribaldrie, ribaudrie, OF. ribalderie, ribauderie.] The talk of a ribald; low, vulgar language; indecency; obscenity; lewdness; -- now chiefly applied to indecent language, but formerly, as by Chaucer, also to indecent acts or conduct.

All I can say is, this Boston trip is going to be a riot, I find it hard to keep up because it's 2am when we are in the midst of our chatting, that's late isn't it? But would I miss it? Not if I can help it.
I think we're going to have a webcam when we have our party on friday night. I say party, I mean the coming together of 12 women and their food. Canada, the U.S and England are bringing their best and most delicious treats and we will be eating it ( all, probably, we are good at that, you'll see)
We have Greek names, fitting and grand and spelled in a trendy and hip way.
I don't think there will be dancing but I won't discount it entirely, many many pictures will be taken and shared, I suspect video coverage too. I am so looking forward to it, I even have fond thoughts about the journey. I am sure that will change as it gets neared because flying is so scary to me, it doesn't get any easier the more I do it.
I never have really understood people wanting to travel, I love everything I have right here, I don't need to see the rest of the world, it has never really pulled me to know it better.
I do though, absolutely love people and am willing to travel to see them, be with them and share memories, make memories.
I find myself planning more journeys and meetings, more fun and glorious times. I have so much to make up for, too many years hiding in fear, not doing things because I am scared, and fat and getting old, I won't be getting younger and probably not thinner, certainly not more beautiful and the older I get, the more I see it doesn't matter. I am just me and just me is alright really ( although not terribly happy with old lady dark hair, that is still making me flinch when I catch a glimpse of it) H likes it very much, which is annoying, he never comments on my appearance and wouldn't you know, the one time he does it is to say he loves something that makes me feel a little embarrassed out in public. Perhaps there is a happy medium brown out there somewhere that won't make my head blister and itch, we can but hope!
I have a dream that maybe next year, some of those lovely women will come to England so I can take them to castles and cream teas, fish and chips and morris dancing on the green. ( or not maybe Morris dancing, fan of it though I am) I would love to drive them along the winding lanes and hear the terror in their voices.....but not bring them here because I love them, when women leave home and family to travel, the very last thing on earth they want to do is spend time with other people's family and no matter how cute, precious, divine children are, if you leave yours at really want not to have anyone else's around.
Eating out is a must, we don't want to feel we ought to help with dishes or cooking or serving, no clearing up, we want delicious meals put in front of us and empty plates taken if by magic, we will leave generous tips and appreciate the service, we will be patient and not complain should our food take while to arrive because we are not in a hurry, we are out and the world is our oyster. Mothers take a treat like this so seriously it needs not to be messed with. We will cram every second with moments of such joy you would wish it could be bottled.
We have 3 nights and 4 days in Boston and I am pretty positive that every moment of that time will be accounted for, very little of it will be taken in sleeping, too much to do and so much to see and we will be doing it all.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Real life.( and a whine, sort of )

I needed to get some real life in, while the sun shone, also to get the noise that accompanies these pictures OUTSIDE where it could be carried away on the wind, instead of into my ears where it increases and turns into a huge whistling explosion of insanity....funny how when we are outside it is joyful and fun. This is Sophie undrugged and sober, without even nicotine...not even an abundance of sugar. She is still incredibly LOUD and bouncy and a bit gorgeous ( in small doses please)

They love her playing with them but if only she could maybe just once, hear that key noise that indicates they have had ENOUGH...please stop. Yes, that is my littlest precious under Sophie's big bottom!
Look at how he feels totally safe up there being spun around like a blob of candy floss in the drum.
They are asleep now. All is well.

*Came back to add this bit, I'm sure you'll be thrilled.*
I've been a bit out of sorts the past 2 days or so, a hiatus in my happy clappy moment.
I'm not entirely sure why, I think the fact that without boring details my money has been messed about and although, after phone calls and can you put that in writing and we'll take 2 weeks to think about it and maybe even then not do anythings, it will be sorted, right now I am not in my usual calm and all knowing where every penny is and can tell you where it went and where it is going and *breathe* is all ok place.
No, I am in a WHAT?? WHERE?? HOW MUCH AND WHY??? place which annoys me and school holidays are not the time to discover that everything has been changed and will take endless calling and asking and tutting and sighing. 3 little boys, no school, very cold weather and a normally attentive husband who takes little boys and entertains them and walks them to parks and great things like that, have him clean carpets for 20 year old son who moved house and then, having driven him and the Kirby ( ever felt the weight of those monsters?) and the big box with shampoo bits and bobs and the gallon of shampoo to the now empty home and play with boys.
3 Hours later. look up to see husband ( who suffers from the most unbelievable pain in his neck every single night, often needing injections into the base of his head to help pain) passing the window.....with the kirby upside down and leaning over his shoulder, having walked carrying Kirby of enormous weight, plus box and now not full gallon of shampoo. We live a way from Jordan's old flat and at the top of the meanest and most unforgiving hill you ever saw.
So, he has been in crippling pain, ever since, all week. Pale and terribly brave and only just, about 10 minutes ago saying " Hmm, think carrying that Kirby may have hurt my neck" rather than saying so days ago.
I have been brewing, filling with indignation that suddenly, a usually overly attentive father has become sullen and not willing to take noisy boys OUT and AWAY and wear them out. Mutter and grumble and must do it all and must cook and shop ( except no money because 'oh sorry, yes, will sort that out but will take days or even weeks') and now even PLAY??
Words, that's all it takes, an opening of the mouth and allowing what is in the head to fall out, thus enabling loving and remarkably understanding wife to feel sympathy and compassion.
So I have been somewhat unwillingly myself to talk or make merry, sense of humour has been lacking and impatience at an all time high.
I lost it this evening, at last it was time for the weekly session of NBA on the TV, my cue to take a lovely hot bath and relax, spend some time applying lovely lotion that is slowly giving my fat old legs a summer glow.....ahhhhhh....oh bugger....remembered suddenly that in 15 minutes we will be having the monthly visit from church members to make sure we are well and happy and enveloped in feelings of harmony and love.
In theory this is a great idea, in practise it annoys the bejeebers out of me because it is smack bang at bath time for me, bed time for boys, breathing a sigh of relief and being able to stare into space and thank the powers that be that it is all over for another day ( not, you understand that we don't adore our children and indeed our very lives)
I can do the "Hello, how are you? fine Good, spiritual thought to uplift you, goodbye" I LOVE that...the hour long slightly awkward sessions of me filling in the silence with probably inappropriate stories, whilst trying not to think about what I'm missing on telly or getting very grumpy about the fact that if they stay much longer I will still have wet hair at midnight, not so much. ( If I were/was catholic, now might be a good time to do the rosary I think, would it?) If there were/was a storm right now I would be hiding under a rubber mat . Also if I had cake in this house, I would so be eating it.( do have much chocolate under my bed ready to be packed for lovely people in Boston but H is up there already and I actually want cake, not chocolate) I like my religion best.
So, I did much slamming about and griping, throwing bloody lego ( it is NOT lego, it's DUPLO, thankyou Elijah,) into the tub for the 3876 time this week. Well that behaviour insults H and his superior spirit ( and I'm not being facetious, it is superior because he exercises it and keeps himself away from the baser things in life, like me. I like base things, they make me laugh) and before you know it, I have dragged him down to my level and we are both in vile tempers.
Because visitors are expected we send the boys to bed early....a mere 20 minutes, no big deal unless you are Isaac and routine is very very important.
He made H and I look like amateurs. HE screamed so loudly at the injustice of it being NOT EIGHT O'CLOCK IS IT???? I want to come OUT I can't stay in here if it isn't EIGHT O'CLOCK CAN I??? and not BEING READY.....NOT READY! IS IT 8 O'CLOCK IS IT??? NO!!!! Until it was 8 o'clock when he suddenly just lay down and went to sleep....well I missed the visit anyway, problem solved. I sat outside Isaac's room with a book in my hand and said many. many time " no, you cannot come out, you have been very rude, you cannot speak to me or daddy this way and so whether it is 8 o'clock or not, you are staying in your room" What I said in my head can't be written on my blog because the computer will melt.
I thought H might ignore me all evening because he does that sometimes when he is cross, which makes me REALLY cross and here we go again. He didn't and I didn't and all is well I think.
I think I have written all the letters and made all the phone calls and I sincerely hope that by saturday the money issues will be all tidy and in order again, which will make me happy and calm, but will be too late for the 2 weeks off school, oh well...that means that the money we didn't spend these last 2 weeks will be there to spend in London, until I remember the Electricity bill ( which hey, £111.59 for 12 weeks...that's GREAT! We are not going to do prepay because we see that both gas and electricity is considerably more expensive that way) and the car needs taxing at the end of the month too ( hooray for little car with no room and tiny engine, costs much less that big old gas guzzling monster)
So, it's all good really, just don't come to visit me in the evenings and expect me to be sweetness and light. Unless you bring cake.

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Self- aggrandizing at its best.

Sometimes, as a mother there is nothing to do but just say it as it is. I could dress it down and take a shot at acting like it's not a big deal but it is IS a big deal so I am going to just brag it.
Sophie, the girl child has now been off drugs of all kinds for just over a month. She has even stopped smoking and that is such a huge deal. I love that she tells me how different she feels and also, when I asked her if she thought that now she acknowledges this, will it be easier not to go back and start all over again, she said No. I like that. She says she feels good, she likes the way she looks now but she still craves it. To have given up cigarettes as well is what has made me feel so proud of her. She still wants drugs and drink, she thinks of it often, especially when stressed and angry.
This is so early on in a good time for Sophie and we have been in similar places before, the difference this time is that she has learned so much. She is still Sophie, still loud and over the top, she still manages to make me cringe when we are in public, because bless her enormous mouth, she turns head with that fog horn of a gob!
I know that we have a long way to go, I know that every choice belongs to Sophie, I will have to stay in the background and keep holding my breath, praying and crossing fingers. On friday she has her first appointment with mental health, I hope it is a good one, not one where she sits and says all the right things with that sweet smile and the slightly shy tilt of the head.
I am excited to look at the future and imagine her being happy in it.
I can see ( if I let myself) that she will have a life with responsibilities and be able to get through it, that she can learn and deal. That's all I ask of her.
She is listening to what others have to say and although she doesn't like many of the things she has to do, she is doing them. Big steps.
Then we have that littlest one.
I maybe don't give him the kudos the others get, they are just mini Hs with their photographic memories and then my littlest one, he is just gloriously regular, he is 4, he does 4 year old things. He painted the bathroom with my make up yesterday, he does naughty stuff.
Then, today I found him with my laptop open, so sad because " It won't work and I tarnt find it and no-body won't help me and I duss tarnt do it!"
When I looked at what he was doing, he had typed 'highsolmymosicolgems' in the search engine, he is 4...high school musical games! Then I found a picture of a stick with a fat head and underneath was written BASITBOL ( basketball) He's not a dipstick, I do believe he got some of those smart genes after all, as well as a big old pile of bloody scrumptiousness.
Yeah, it's my family and I'll brag if I want to.

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Monday, April 14, 2008

Sometimes we make stuff....

Like Rice Krispie treats.



Sunday, April 13, 2008

Ere you left your room this morning....

Charley Pride on

I should admit, that for too long, I have been reluctant to pray. I can say regular prayers, bless the food, pray at the end of the day with my family, pary with friends if they ask me to, but the prayers that mean the most, the ones that hand over a piece of your soul in such humble entreaties? I sort of stopped those a very long time ago. I could count on one hand ( and have fingers left over)the times I have laid myself at His feet and cried for His help in the last 15 years or so.
I know when I stopped praying like that, it was when my life was so out of my hands, when things kept slamming into me and breaking me a little bit more ever day. I thought I saw that God knew me, I believe He does and I also have never stopped believing that He loves me. I thought I saw that HE has control of my life and although I have the right and freedm to choose, ultimately if HE thinks I need something, I get it, be that a trial to test my strength or challenge my faith, or a blessing to enrich my life and show me that all is well.
I stopped feeling that I should go to Him and just let it go, I stopped thinking that there was any point to my pleading and crying, to asking and trying to show Him what I wanted from my life. If I needed it and He thought I should have'd come, what's to ask??
I have been in Primary at church for a while, teaching the babies and some older kids, singing and listening and for the most part enjoying. Lately that has been hard for me, in my battles against adversity and the true evils of this world that have been threatening to swallow my girl and my heart whole, I have felt utterly depleted in the spiritual stakes. Empty me.
HAve you ever tried to teach the good things when you have forgotten there are any?
There are no excuses and no chances to lay the blame on anyone else for this, I am not stupid, I can read, I have all the resources at my fingertips to recharge my spiritual batteries, my husband even has a website that he works on that is so overflowing with marvellous and uplifting stories and scriptures, I only have to click and could be so enveloped in good things that I would immediately be uplifted, but...yeah you know, feed me a grape. I am weary. I am so pathetically lame at the moment that I need spoon feeding marvellous things. Let me sit and uplift me, just don't ask me to make any kind of effort because. I. am. so. tired.
So, a week or two ago, I had a word with the primary president and said "Adele, I am weary, I am so running on empty I can't tell you...please let me go and sit with the grown ups and just listen for a bit, let me hear some good things. Please."
This is not really what we should do, we are encouraged to serve and to give, which is a good thing. I just feel a little selfish right now and maybe the day will come ( like today perhaps) when I feel that I should have found a way other than let the babies down, that I should have put others before myself.
Anyway, Adele loves me and she tod me to go, to enjoy and to listen. She didn't hand me the worries of who would teach my class of 3 year olds, she didn't tut and sigh, she just said " yes, go and do what you need to do"
I went and I did and it didn't take me any time at all to see why I had to be with the grown ups today.
We had a lesson about ...well it doesn't matter what it was about, what happened was this. Something was said that made me think. Ta -Da...great lesson, that's what it's all about.
I suddenly knew where I have been going wrong all these years. I have assumed that the Lord doesn't really care. That amazes me. I thought I knew He does, I thought I really knew He does. Today I realised, as clearly as if someone had smacked me hard between the eyes, that He truly and completely loves me and that there will never, ever be a time when he rolls his eyes because I have come to ask Him to help me.
My heart has been breaking over my girl, I am sadder than I can express that she does not truly believe that I love her. I am frustrated that she continues to not trust me or believe that if she were to let me, I could help her.
( anyone getting the parallel here?)
When she turned up at my house that one night at 1am, when she fell on the floor completely broken and weeping, when she sobbed and begged me to help her because she simply cannot stand to feel this way another day. My heart sang.
She was here, she really knew that I can help her, she believed that I love her and will do everything in my power to hep her and all I needed, all I was waiting for was for her to come to me and ask, meaning it.
The many times she has yelled and said she is sorry, help her then, those request flew over the top of my head, she didn't mean it, I didn't feel it, she had to go on her way. There was nothing I could do.
I knew when she was sincere. The moment she came to me, with real intent, I was so overwhelmed with relief that I dropped to my knees too. Nothing has been too hard, to tiring, too difficult to do for this girl, since that night. We have done things together, we have filled in forms and made phone calls, we have made appointments and we have spent time together and it has been a joy ( mostly)
She has her appointment on friday to see the mental health team and I have every hope that her jourmey to recovery has already begun and as long as she stays as determined as she is now, she will win her fight.
I will stay right with her doing everything she needs me to do for as long as she wants me to do it. This is all her call. If she turns away and chooses to turn her back, I will have to allow her to do that and it will break my heart. I will never tire of hearing her voice when she comes to me with her hear open and ready to hear what I have to say, I will never roll my eyes when she comes to me with a question that she really needs the answer to.
I will continue to feel exasperated when she asks the same things over and over again and then keeps rattling on without listening to the answer, she will continue to drive me crazy when she asks what to do and when I tell her or advise her she says that too hard and she is going to do what is easier and more fun. I will be right here when she comes back and says that maybe I was right and can I help her after all.
I have always known what she likes and also, what she needs, I couldn't give it to her though, until I was sure that she wanted it and knew that she needed it.
I am nowhere near as compassionate and loving as the Lord, I don't know all the asnwers, I have all the weaknesses and frailties of humanity. If I can feel this way towards my child, how much more understanding does the Lord have for me? How could He be anything but thrilled when I come to him on my bended and weary knees to just tell him that I cannot stand to feel this way anymore and ask Him what I should do? I don't believe He ever tires of hearing from me when I am sincere and ready to hear what He needs me to know. I forgot that and today, sitting with the grown ups I was reminded. I wasn't wrong to ask for that.
I didn't feel good when a little boy said " Hey! Mister 'Ellen! Why you didn't come in our church today?" and his mum said he says he doesn't want to come to church when Mister 'Ellen isn't there. I felt even crummier when mum told me all the little baby ones cried when I wasn't there. I just know that the one hour I sat with the grown ups and I listened and actually heard, it was the very best thing for me.
I am ready to pray again. Properly. I believe that I will be heard and that the angels and my Heavenly Father will be as happy to hear what I have to say as I was when my girl cried to me that she needed my help and I knew that she believed I loved her.

"Oh how praying rests the weary,
Prayer will turn the night to day,
So, when life gets dark and dreary,
don't forget to pray"

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Saturday, April 12, 2008

See, now this is what I'm talking about.

Just lately, because thinking is what I do so well, I am becoming more and more worried and unsettled by the level of adversity our children face. It is just getting near impossible to find anywhere that is peaceful and gentle for our children to be.
Everywhere we go it appears that there must be noise, mobile phones, IPods, nowhere to escape the relentless noise and frantic business. Why are we all so baffled by the increase in attention deficit disorders, hyperactivity , kids that can't sit or listen, children who twitch and fidget because they aren't being stimulated and amused every second of their lives.
From birth we attach noise and colours and stimulating toys to their cribs, we wind up music to keep them entertained and lull them to sleep, we have lost those days of peace and quiet. No more the gentle wooden toys that needed imagination, we have batteries and flashing lights and noise and more noise.
So many children are so angry, so unable to control their minds or their mouths. I am literally terrified for these little boys of mine. the more I see teenagers these days, even in this supposed gentle part of the world we live in, I see kids who feel lost, who seem to have no idea of what they should be doing, how to entertain themselves without ear phones and gadgets.
I miss conversation, I miss hearing beautiful speech and language. I am insulted by 'Innit?' and
' Uh?' I make such a conscious effort to use words in this house, to jump on poor use of language, to encourage politeness and kind words.
We have a word a day calendar and H and I love tearing off the words and keeping the great ones ( Fanfaronade...we soon found out that his claim that he could play the bagpipes was nothing but fanfaronade...he turned out to be just as bad as the rest of us.....Bumbershoot....A light rain had begun to fall, grandpa said " Don't forget your bumbershoot!") H puts some of the words in the boys lunchboxes which they find hystercial.
I look back on how I raised the big kids and I see so many things I could have done differently, I watch these little ones growing so quickly and both H and I see that we can't afford to procrastinate, we have to use every chance to teach them and show them what life holds for them and try to make sure that they have all the tools to face what will come their way.
I think about it a lot, H does something about it.
Like this morning, he set up the dining room for the boys, we all know he is a nerdy Mc geekster, his boys are little apples that have not fallen far from the tree. Most of them anyway.
They are like sponges, they have the most impressive memories and powers of observation...two of them anyway.
We don't do video games in this house, no playstations or Xboxes, we do wee but we don't Wii, I can't stand the vacant stares that go with those games and H just can't stand the waste of time. I se how busy the boys are and wonder, if we had games, what would go to make room for them, I can't think of anything we would be willing to push out to make time, so we don't do them at all.
H set the dining room up like an IT suite ....take a look..


It looks impressive but we have one laptop with a smashed screen so that is hooked up to the big screen there, H and I have a laptop each and then we have the one that was sent back here instead of to the factory, we emailed the company and got to keep it..hoorah! So, lots of laptops, plenty of boys, you will see how Seth and Issac are taking note and listening and all ready to will see Eli, not.

I took some pictures and I will admit that as proud of my little nerdy brain boys, that little bugger on the back row there....

that one, he is my boy. His little 4 year old brain is so completely normal it is a little refreshing to me.
I have never had a 'normal' 4 year old before and I really like it. I love the messy who cares? Attitude, the spilling of things and the shrug of his shoulders as he says " Ne'er mind, it don't matter" the bizarre combination of pyjamas and odd shirts mixed with flip flops and long hair made of towels. Not for him the matching, tightly tucked, every day the sameness. Sheer and utter normalcy, in an eccentric and touching way.
He didn't last long in the world of search engines and picture editing, he tired quickly of asking is there a highschool musical dot com please??? PLEASE??? Is there? Music dot com nen?? OTAY! TAN I DO PIMP MY RIDE NEN?? ( ever have your 4 year old turn to you and say " how do you spell pimp?" When on a computer, makes you hold your breath for a moment until you remember he can customise cars with fire flashes and paint them pink, all is well)
He has the most precious pout and teary eyed look and flings himself down on the floor because ( or betoz) nobody even loves him or likes him and they don't een like high school musical and Seff says I tarn't even be a girl when I drow up and.....he is divine, and I thank the Lord for him every day when I begin to feel like the dim relation in this house of high brow conversation.
Sometimes, it would be easy to feel that I have no place in this situation, I could quite easily feel that I have little to contribute, except that for every brilliant conversation there is at the dinner table, I am able to bring reality into it. For every incredible fact these little boys are taught and remember, I get to explain how they can use that knowledge, for each spiritual nugget that H brings to their attention, I show them what that means in our lives.
I am so incredibly grateful for the balance in this family. I barely get through a single day without feeling gratitude for being able to raise these little people with H. I did do a pretty good job with the big 3 but I could not do everything, I couldn't cover all aspects and I truly believe that 2 parents are always better than one. I should say two good parents, my 3 older children are infinitely better off having been raised by me alone, than with their dad around always. He had his place in his once a month visits but I believe, given the exceptional circumstances with Dan and Jordan, that if he had stayed around, they would never have recovered the way they did. He would have broken them, the way he broke Sophie.
I think there is a good balance in this house and I am sure that these boys would lose out if they only had one or the other of us.
I am sleeping better. That's a good thing but I am so frustrated at the things I no longer have time for! I achieved so much while the world slept, now I wake up in the morning and darn it all, it's stil undone! When the boys aren't at school, I still go to bed as late but I sleep so late in the morning, it's unbelievable the difference in how I feel after regularly having 6, 7 or even 8 hours sleep. The welts are back, after a 2 week stint of hardly any itches it's baffling to find myself stiped and welty again. Darn it!
So, now I told the world how little I am getting done these nights I am off to scrub a kitchen floor!


Friday, April 11, 2008

Bring it on.

It is all good. This friends business? I love it. How do people function without friends? I couldn't and I am so lucky I have never had to, ever.
I've had such great friends, I still have great friends. I think, if all my best friends were all in a room together, they would all like each other too.
I love irreverence. Potty humour? Cracks me up, every time. I love people that can laugh at themselves, without that, I probably won't get too close to you. I laugh at people who know how to let go and laugh, at things that are not supposed to be funny, I have laughed at things that others think tragic because there has been so much tragedy, in many periods of my life if I didn't laugh, I'd have sunk.
In preparation for our trip to Boston, we have been having some IM chats, as a group, I avoid IMing usually because for some reason any IM programme messes up my computer and then, even though I love to chat, I get so stressed when someone IMs me if I am trying to do something else, I like to pretend to be able to multi task but online, I'm a one at a time girl.
I did find my unused Yahoo chat thing and restarted it and I am so glad I did that.
I have laughed, genuinely laughed, from my very soul these past few days, a taster of what is to come.
I am beginning to see who these other people are, beginning to feel how the few days in Boston will be. I think I can see who will be in the forefront and who will enjoy watching more.
I know that this trip is something that I need. I have years of fun waiting to get out. I have years of sadness that needs washing away, putting where it belongs and this trip to Boston will do so much of that. Before Boston I have a trip with H, almost forgotten, our few days in London that Dan set up for us, tickets in my purse, rooms all booked, Lion King seats with our names on, everything set and just 2 1/2 weeks until we go. H and I forget each other too often. Both so deeply in tune with these little boys that need so much of our time and energy, both unwilling to admit that good heavens, being 45 and 48 with little boys of 4, 6 and 7 is really pretty tough, we give our all to make sure the gitlets have what they need and when they go to bed, we slump.
From the very first day of our marriage H and I have had our heads down and our shoulders to the wheel. We have battled and won some huge issues and we are now enjoying a wonderful time of breathing and taking in, the trouble is, we haven't yet learned what to do about us. Me and Him and he and I, us. Just us. Tum de dum.
I enjoy pretty much everything about H, I adore him. I love his beautiful face ( and when he hears me say that he will always say " In the most masculine way of course")
I am infuriated by his youthful, tight body ( not a wrinkle or saggy bit to be found darn him)
I am touched by his attention to every detail where his youngest sons are concerned and I am worried by his switching off as regards to his oldest son. He appears to not think about this boy that has more problems than I can list, I know that isn't the case and I assume that he has done what his mind always does in cases that he has no control over and it has switched off, tuned out.
When we saw Rob in December it was the saddest time, the most shocking sight.
Rob has driven me to distraction more times than I can count, undiagnosed until last year, he is now diagnosed as Autistic ( and since Isaac and Seth were diagnosed it became so clear to us that Rob too had the same issues, no-one would hear us when we said that but eventually it was diagnosed at the same time as his paranoid schizophrenia. this is a sad and helpless young man who will probably never be independent or it would seem, happy. Gone forever that spunky, in your face unbeatable kid that would bounce back from every effort to contain him, teach him, reason with him. When I think of how I feel about Sophie, I can only begin to imagine how H must feel about Rob who has damaged himself beyond repair and added to that had issues undiagnosed for so long. I wish I were able to switch off often, people with asperger's and any kind of autism are able to switch off what worries them, they are, in fact unable NOT to switch off.
Meet someone you don't like? OFF...ignore, turn away from, don't speak to. That's tough when you're married to someone who appears beyond clever, who is functioning as a regular person and suddenly,you can look him right in the face and speak...he looks right through you. You can ask the same question over and over again....nothing. Before I knew about H and asperger's, there were times I could have used a baseball bat on his head for being so bloody rude. Now I see it and I get what is happening, it is still difficult and I have learned how to deal with it between ourselves ( I am one for a good fight, if you're mad? Let me have it, I'll get over it and even enjoy the fight because it is SO fabulous to clear the air) You cannot argue with anyone that has even the lightest dusting of autism....give in, you'll never win, these people can hold onto an opinion for years!
Someone handing you a problem? What problem? What?
Emotions? Agh...must I? say what? What IS that you talk of???
So, the list can go on but I won't do that to you, the point here is, H and I live an extraordinary life that works for us, who knows how, it just does. I love him ( as long as I don't keep saying it because I said it already and he believed me, why must I keep saying the same thing over and over? Enough now.)
I could yearn for fun and spontaneous acts of adoration...but it would get me nowhere but disappointed, what I need to do and am just beginning to understand that I must do, is to do that with friends. H can't do it. It hurts him to just get up and go out and do whatever comes along as much as it hurts Isaac to have to speak to someone he doesn't know, as much as it hurts Seth to even think about watching a musical.
I used to think that if I left H at home while I went out to whoop it up and get aching belly muscles ( does my belly HAVE any muscles, wow) If I up and went and laughed and enjoyed while he is at home, doing what he does, every day at the same time, in the same order...well how MEAN, how AWFUL. The fact that it has taken me so many years to grasp that H positively heaves a sigh of relief when I leave him and go and have fun, well DUH.
When I go and do and then I come home.....he is so happy to see me, he is thrilled that I had a great time, he gets that this is important to me and is delirious ( no, he isn't that word is SO not H, he wouldn't know how to do delirious, not even for a moment, not even to please me.) but anyway, this is a good thing.
We do need though, to learn how to have fun together as well. There are things that we both enjoy and London is one of them. I am looking forward to 2 nights and 3 days with this man of mine, to seeing him light up at the things that he loves, when he is stress free he is so funny, his quick wit is exactly the kind of humour that I adore, Seth has it too, sometimes it's almost cutting but they both manage not to hurt with the witty comments and perfectly timed one liners.
The relationship H and I have is so splendidly old fashioned, so rare these days as far as I can see. Just right for me and for him too.
The friendships I have though? Priceless to me. Life savers all.
Some are old and some are so new, but each as valuable as the next.
The chats and some of the emails that have been flying to and fro the last few days have lifted my spirits immeasurably, I have snorted, guffawed, tittered, gasped, hooted and wiped endless tears of mirth and I have loved every one of them. I'd write a cast list but I know I would forget someone and that would be dreadful, so unnamed for know who you are though you band of irreverent and shameless floozies. Can't wait til we meet up and show Boston what life is all about. Bring it on.

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Who wants to be a millionaire?

Today, at 11am my front door burst open and in came Dan, Jordan and Sophie. We were in the front room and as they charged in they each grabbed a little one, the noise was ear splitting and the joy, immeasurable. I don't often get all my eggs in one basket, so when it happens, like it did this morning, I am overwhelmed with happy.
Jordan and Mel moved today, from their flat into a dear little house just down the road.
When I see my children, working together, helping each other and just enjoying each other, it is tantamount to winning the lottery ( I imagine!) there is nothing else I need, nothing more I want. This is it.
When I see one of them willing to drive 200 miles to help another, when I watch one of my older children helping a little one, playing with and even couldn't make my joy any greater if you gave me a gold clock.



These little boys are so adored, so completely accepted and loved, I see the effect of that on their faces. I swear that there are times when an actual light shines out of them.

You can take your kids to the best photographer, you can dress them up, get the very best lighting, perfect can get a fantastic picture.
Also, you can get a little boy, who is completely and utterly adored, send him amongst people who light up with joy at the very sight of him, you can let him go and let him just be, wearing his play clothes and his brother's girlfriend's shoes,


You can let your 6 year old go in a rental van with his 23 year old brother and watch the light on his face.

Allow your 7 year old to carry and collect from the van over the road, with his biggest brother...



I think that one of my greatest joys is that my children are so kind. They ( of course) fight with each other ( though so much less the older they get) They look out for each other, they help each other without question. They are kind to other people too, the are known for their generosity, I love that.
H did take the boys out the other day, with empty bags and they played in the park and they picked up rubbish, they cleaned the park and pavements, Isaac is still talking about it ( Seth? "well, what on earth kind of outing will THAT be? Who ever picks up rubbish when they go to the park? Good grief!" But he did it and came home knowing what kind of person does just that and he is that kind of person. )
Kindness begins with there a better lesson for your children to learn?
Millionaire? wouldn't say no, but really? I'm already rich.